Drink: Vella Delicious Red
Mike “Hash” Tirico let me know that the team who won the first quarter in this series had gone on to win the game. So let’s take a look at how the first quarter went, shall we?
The Bulls established an inside game early on, going to both Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah. Yet, after this early down-low success, they started to settle for jumpers. Luckily, The Beard was hitting everything, and all was well. On defense, the Bulls were mostly playing tight and rotating much better than the previous game. There was a rather scary moment at the 3:25 mark when Deng got vertical, his body got horizontal (via Josh Smith), then gravity did its thing, and Deng went BOOM! on his tail bone. After staying down for a minute, Our Man From Sudan got up and finished his free throws. When the period ended, the Bulls were up ten. Hence, they won the game.
Since the story of the first quarter told us all we need to know about the outcome, there is no need to go on about the game in a chronological manner. Instead, we will move on to some interesting points/observations.
The story of the game (other than the Bulls winning and advancing to the next round) was the play of Carlos Boozer. The Beard was hitting shots with the greatest of ease. He was like a circus act with his jumper. He was also active on the boards, ending with ten rebounds. Yes, that is right, Booz was the 20 & 10 man we signed. Is this a sign of Boozer getting healthy and comfortable or is it an aberration? For the hopes of our chances against the big, bad Heat, let us pray that it is the prior.
Here is one that no one may get (especially since I cannot find an in-game picture). When Jeff Teague went down early in the second quarter and was rolling on the ground, he looked an awful lot like the retarded* dude in Platoon that they kill in the hut in the village. You either have that visual in your head or you think that I am totally messed-up in the skull. While it is hard to argue against the latter, I assure you I mean no malice in the observation, it just happens to be dead on.
Omer Asik had another great game that does not show up on the stat sheet. The talk of Tuesday’s game was the queer fourth quarter line-up that closed out the game and featured my favorite Turk at center. In an encore performance, Sloth put in 20 strong minutes. The center, who Harish Tirico compared to the Iron Sheik (You get it? Because he is
Iranian Turkish!), provided solid defense down-low while the Bulls could afford to cut some offense with a large lead. Does his heavy minutes in the last two contests provide some insight for the next series?
There was a point in the third when Luol Deng went up for a jumper, got a hand in his face, and hung Jordan-esque in the air, before releasing and watching the ball drop through the hoop. It was pretty.
A minor dig on the world’s MVP is that he really needs to stop settling for threes. His three-ball was dropping at an alarming rate early in the season, but it has dropped off considerably since then. If he has a wide-open look, he should take it without thinking. All other three attempts should probably be skipped, seeing as he shot less than 30% this series.
The last observation I have is how the Bulls “celebrated” their victory and entrance into the Conference Finals. The Heat won the night prior and acted like they won the championship. Tonight the Bulls did the same and acted like they had another series to play, which they do. In the words of Da Rose, “It’s going to be fun.”
The Chicago Bulls are in the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since the Jordan Era. While that is a hell of an accomplishment, the way they played this series left something to be desired. It is like when you go to Dairy Queen and go with the Butter Finger Blizzard when you know the Snickers Blizzard is way better. Yeah. The Bulls need to go Snickers on the Heat!
*I am perfectly fine with using the term “retarded” instead of “mentally handicapped.” Deal with it.